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Two firms to deepen cooperation in Belt and Road investments

Supply chain management company YCH Group and e-commerce logistics services firm Forchn Holdings announced last Friday that they have signed a memorandum of understanding to deepen cooperation in investment opportunities along the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) corridor.

Under the partnership, YCH and Shanghai-based Forchn said they would explore the joint launch of a US$150 million (S$198 million) BRI Logistics Real Estate Private Equity Fund to invest in warehousing and logistics assets located in South-east Asia and China.

YCH Group executive chairman Robert Yap described the fund as crucial in establishing the company as a key player in the BRI, and would further strengthen its offerings in the Asia-Pacific region.

"Many of our clients see the BRI as an opportunity, and now they would be able to tap our infrastructure and expertise to expand and scale the reach of their businesses," he added.

In their joint announcement, both firms cited the New Frontiers report by Knight Frank, which said Singapore is one of the most important markets in the region that can contribute to the success of the BRI.

In addition to the fund, YCH will also collaborate with Forchn's e-commerce logistics subsidiary, Ruyicang, to jointly offer e-commerce and omni-channel logistics services in the Asean and China region.

Both parties also announced their intention to work together to "maximise the potential" of each other's real estate portfolio.

Forchn Holdings chairman Zhang Guobiao said the partnership with YCH was a key milestone for Forchn Holdings as it continues its expansion beyond China through Forchn International in Singapore, its overseas headquarters.

He added that the collaboration with YCH will ensure sustainability and "cements Forchn's position as a leading logistics real estate investor and e-commerce logistics services provider along the BRI".